I love office supplies. Sometimes, I admit that I still feel like a 12 year old girl, super excited to go down to the store and buy school supplies for the coming year. Pens, highlighters, journals, notebooks…sign me up for all of them please! Which is why I wasn’t the least surprised when I fell in love with decorative planning all over again last year.
In June, Erin Condren released her 2016-2017 updated planners, and I promptly ordered two, along with some other goodies. In my quest for planner peace and a system that worked for me, I had heavily researched all of the options last year before I jumped in, and EC just fits the way my brain works and my aesthetic preferences. Just a few of the things I like about them are:
- Interchangeable covers! I change mine every couple of months.
- Personalization – sometimes I put my name, sometimes a quote, sometimes a word, or sometimes my initials. Whatever I use, though, you are going to instantly know this planner is mine.
- Choice of layouts, and specifically the vertical layout – it allows me to utilize the three boxes per day any way I want – by time of the day, by area of my life, or anything else I might want to come up with.
- The paper! It really is nice paper, I don’t worry about ripping the pages as I tote it around from place to place.
- The size – I need a lot of room to write. I am busy and forgetful, so the writing things down part is important for me and I need space to write.
- They are pretty!
- The coil system allows an open planner to lay flat, making it easier to write in it.
- There are tons of sticker options available on Etsy that fit perfectly for the EC planners. I like to decorate while also being functional. 🙂
My current EC planner works great, but I was trying to track work and my personal life in the same planner. Given I am in a management position at my 9-5, sometimes I felt a little shy to whip out my decorated planner – my boss doesn’t need to know my weekend plans are Netflix and chill, ya know? So for the new year I decided to order two, so that I could split up my professional and personal life. This also allows me to try out a different format to see how I like it.
Here is my recent haul!
The colorful one in the back is an hourly layout that will be used for work. The chalkboard cover one is a neutral vertical that I’ll be using for everything else in my life. And I couldn’t resist the globe cover – I will be putting that on a notebook for travel plans and bucket list items for now.
Let’s compare how the two layouts are different.
The neutral option uses an adorable font, but is primarily black and white, which makes it easier to decorate your monthly and weekly layouts. Colors really pop on the neutral background. The colorful option is just so darn pretty, and you can find Etsy stickers to match each month’s colors if you are worried about being matchy-matchy.
Here are some sample monthly pages. Functionally, they are the same. I like keeping my monthly goals together in one place down the right sidebar.
Between each month is an inspirational sentence or quote. The two options have the same quotes, but they look a little different. This is one of the few places the neutral (on the right) will give you a little color.
The weekly view is really the main difference. The vertical squares give you flexibility to plan your way. The hourly has set times listed for each day. Since I walk from meeting to meeting all day, the hourly should be a great fit for my work schedule. Here they are a little closer so that you can see the hourly better. Notice how the coil allows you to fold the planner and work on just one page.
If you would like your own Erin Condren Life Planner, they have an awesome referral program. If you click on my referral link below, you will get a discount on your first order. Full disclosure – when you place an order, after it is shipped I also get a little credit to use towards more product, too. If planners aren’t your thing, EC also has a lot of other stationery products that might be more to your liking.
In upcoming blog posts, I’ll share some decorating inspiration and might even attempt to make my own stickers using my Silhouette Cameo for fun.